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to discuss the life and work of an exceptional american, dr. sandy greenberg, who is here with us today in the senate gallery along with his wife sue and his sister brenda even as we speak. sandy in my view, is an honorary delawarean because he spends a month out of every year at one of our most beautiful delaware beaches, rehoboth beach. but he's much more than that, a successful businessman and if i than throw pivot -- philanthropist, he has a wide array of business interests. he's a pioneer in the use of technology and medicine and helped bring telemedicine to rural health care facilities as chairman of the rural health care corporation. he was appointed by president clinton to the board of the national science foundation. and as a young man, he took a break from his studies at columbia where he roomed with art garfunkel to work in the nixon white house. all of this makes a substantive, meaningful contribution to our country. but there is one thing i have not yet mentioned. at the young age of 19, sandy went blind. he lost his sight, and with that all likely hope of a successful comp
storm sandy. i wanted to document floor specifically as chair -- i wanted to come to the floor specifically as the chair of the homeland security subcommittee which has jurisdiction over fema. i understand the other chairs of the appropriations committee has come down, whether for the corps of engineers mitigation issues in this bill or fishery issues, the subject of senator mikulski's committee; or housing and urban development, community block grants -- that's in h.u.d. -- or transportation under the jurisdiction of senator murray's committee. i'm honored to be the chair of the homeland security appropriations committee for several years ago and am proud that some of the reforms that we've put into place were actually seeing the -- we're actually seeing the benefits of today as our first responders respond to literally the worst disaster to hit the northeast in 50 years. and i wanted to just address a few things and to clarify some numbers for the record. despite the fact that hurricane sandy, mr. president, is not on the news every night and cnn is not broadcasting from the
're slated to begin work on a bill offering additional funding for victims of hurricane sandy that would provide an additional $9.7 billion in borrowing authority for the national flood insurance program which is now capped at $20.7 billion. it would also provide the requested $11.5 billion for the fema disaster relief fund, and it also includes some mitigation measures for future disasters. also we expect later debate today on a couple of judicial nominations. earlier this afternoon south carolina governor nikki haley announced she's selected freshman congressman tim scott to fill the seat being vacated by senate jim demint. senator demint leaving to become the president to have heritage foundation, and we'll take a look at what governor haley had to say now. [background sounds] >> good morning, and it is, um, a great day in south carolina. it's a historic day in south carolina because, um, you know, first of all, we all were saddened and surprised when senator demint told us that he was not going to continue in the u.s. senate, but i will tell you as i've told many people, that the her
after a storm as devastating as hurricane sandy. and it's important to understand -- i think that many things have whopped the ability of the states and local communities to deal with some of the effects of this. that is why the sandy emergency supplemental is before us attached to h.r. 1 and why we will be voting on that, i assume, tomorrow. there are two versions before us. one is the senate democrats emergency supplemental proposal. that totals $60.4 billion. it includes nearly $13 billion in mitigation funding. now, that goes for the next storm, not this storm. $3.46 billion for army corps of engineers, $500 million of which are projects from previous disasters, $3 billion to rare or replace federal assets that do not fall in the category of emergency need, $56 million for tsunami cleanup on the west coast, which, of course, does not relate to sandy, and a lot of new authorizing language for reform of disaster relief programs which i would support through the regular process. but without having gone through the authorizing committee, i don't think that's a good idea. our proposed a
senators to continued work on the $60 billion hurricane sandy relief package. negotiations continue on avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff. both parties head to the white house today to discuss the fiscal cliff with the president. it's at 3:00 p.m. eastern in the oval office. senate in recess until 2:00 p.m. eastern when the senate reconveneses, live coverage here on c-span2. >>> and right now on c-span2 a conversation with nebraska senator ben nelson who is retiring after two terms. >>> retiring senator nebraska ben tell me sop. years that began with the 2003 recount and reended with re-election of president obama. if you could think of the adjective to describe these years what would it be? >> clearly interesting. challenging. sometimes totally frustrating. but also full of opportunities for the country. there was some good times during the twelve years laced together with some that weren't so good. 9/11, the anthrax scare. there were positive things as well, the election of president obama, i thought it was a positive statement for the country and moving forward in a way that we
intelligence surveillance act, the others that $60 billion relief package for areas affected by hurricane sandy. the house reconvenes at 2:00 p.m. eastern. house leaders have not release the schedule of legislative activity for tomorrow. live coverage from the house floor on c-span and senate live on c-spanat 2. c-span2. >> united states discovered surveillance flights and the tension builds that we have a quarantine or blockade around cuba and one of the things that happened in that time is a soviet submarine is found by american ships and they dropped depth charges on the soviet submarine. they knocked out the electrical system. carbon dioxide was rising. people were passing out inside the submarine. no communications with the kremlin. the commander of the submarine says load the torpedoes, outlets attack. the war probably started already. we are not going to do somersaults when the war started. we're not going to disgrace the country so launch the nuclear torpedo. they said it ready to launch. fortunately one of the other commanders with a lower rank talked him out of it. he might have saved
isaac left hundreds of thousands of acres under water. hurricane sandy has caused destruction like nothing we could have imagined. as i said, i saw that damage up close for hurricane sandy. weather disasters have destroyed millions of acres of farmland and affected millions of families in every state and corner of this country. we're considering a disaster bill today. the farm bill is a disaster bill because it not only has disaster assistance, but it creates five-year certainty for our growers, who deserve it. they deserve to know what's going to be happening. they deserve to know so they can go into their bank, they can talk about their financing for the coming crop year and be able to plan as well as get immediate help. now, i support passing a disaster bill. and agriculture should be a part of this. but it's not enough. we need to do that and we need to have a five-year farm bill in order to create the certainty that we need. we have spent so much time focusing on how we move forward with agriculture today and create the right kind of risk management tools for the future, and i
in for the day. lawmakers will continue work on a relief package for states affected by hurricane sandy, and funding for victims. we're expecting retiring senators kay bailey hutchison and jon kyl to come to the floor to give their farewell addresses. we could also hear more tribute speeches to why senator daniel inouye who passed away on monday. it was announced yesterday he will lie in state and u.s. capitol rotunda for public viewing thursday. and now live coverage of the u.s. senate here on c-span2. the presiding officer: the senate will come to order. the chaplain dr. barry black will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. o god of love, may your presence fill our lawmakers with your wisdom and power. may your wisdom lead them away from the pitfalls of delayed obedience so that they will seek to promptly do your will. make them a source of strength direct their actions, motivate their hearts, as they seek to begin this day with an unreserved commitment to you. god, give them your supernatural power, wisdom and guidance. for you know them, their needs, their motives,
't been the type of investment made that needs to be made. we've all pointed to superstorm sandy, and fortunately the tunnel connecting new jersey and new york, even though it flooded, it did not breach. and that is huge. a lot of times people talk about the tunnel and the gateway project, new york to new jersey project, it is a corridor project. if the tunnel had collapsed, just think of what would have happened in the northeast. not the northeast corridor, but in the northeast. it would have paralyzed the region and the country. and we need those investments and additional titles in baltimore, in new york, improvements on the bridges in connecticut to make this system to attract the ridership that we need to make that, those cost savings and that calculation work. >> i guess what i'm referring to also is the fact that the $4 billion in revenue that is projected, that's just one number, one benefit, one source. it's certainly far from what we should be talking about obvious. everybody knows that, but the more you can give us, the more you can parse this, different angles you mig
shooter at sandy hook elementary school in you intown, connecticut. it's heartbreaking to listen to the stories of innocent lives cut cruelly short. the pain and grief of the families and friends of these students and teachers are unimaginable. i just want to echo some of the comments that senator durbin made and senator leahy made. we know that the teachers and the aides put their life on the line in order to try to save children. the unbelievable task of the first responders coming to the scene, not knowing what they would find, we send our prayers to all. this is a tragedy beyond words, and i think president obama said it best last night that our hearts are broken. but as senator durbin has said and senator leahy, i particularly want to thank you, we need to take action. congress needs to come together and take action to protect the safety of our children. we must do better. there have been too many episodes in which children's lives and others have been lost that we must figure out ways to do things, to act to prevent these types of tragedies. this conversation must include a
throughout the day package for hurricane sandy victims. live now to the floor of the u.s. senate. to know him and blessed by his sacrifice in defense of american freedom. we served together on the armed services committee and then on the appropriations committee as well. danny's insight was invaluable to our nation's defense and military policy. he did america stronger. i had the pleasure of working with him when we traveled together to bosnia to visit our troops in the very early stages of that conflict. we later went to the middle east on a codel with senator stevens as well. one of the pictures in my offices is senator stevens, senator inouye, senator snowe and myself in our helmets and flak jackets the first time we flew into sarajevo in the early 1990's when the serbs had still been shooting from the hills into the airport. mr. president, in 1995, on the 50th anniversary of world war ii, senator inouye and a number of other world war ii veterans gathered at the smithsonian to reminisce about their time in battle. senator inouye recalled the morning of december 7 at pearl harbor when he r
do have a big disaster like sandy, we've almost always spent all the money because it was pretty easy to have a governor ask for a disaster and the president to declare it, and then the money is gone. fema primarily relied on the per capita damage indicator as the criteria rather than whether or not the local community really had the resources to deal with this on its own. there was no specific criteria in fema to decide at what point we paid various percentages up to 100% coming from the federal government, and the fema administrative costs from 1989 to 2011 had doubled. it had increased from 9% of every disaster to an average of 18% of every disaster. so g.a.o. recommended that we look -- do several things. that fema develop a methodology to more accurately assess what a jurisdiction was able to do, that we develop criteria to know when the federal government should accept all of the obligation, 100% of the adjusted cost, and that we implement new goals to track why these costs of administering disasters were going up so dramatically. so hopefully we can do that, we can look at the
've had a number of those. katrina stands in our minds, but irene and on and on it goes -- sandy being the latest. and this one was truly of monumental proportion and create add lot of damage. and, therefore, a federal response is needed and necessary, if we're going to begin to have an adequate recovery, get people back too work and back in their homes, businesses up and growing again and working. and the bill that is currently on the floor for us here attem attempts to do that. now, some of us were somewhat staggered by the initial number, $60.4 billion. that may not be enough. that may be too much. but in the short amount of time that we've had to try to put all the estimates together in terms of what might be needed, what we have -- senate republican appropriations members attempted to do is separate that from what is immediately needed -- immediate laid being from the time of the storm through march 27 -- to attend to those first responders, those initial responses that need to take place, the whole raft of things that run the gamut from debris cleanup to repairing damaged and flo
not really an emergency, but for the emergency, i don't hear anybody wanting money for sandy any different than any other emergency, and i hope nobody is saying that sandy ought to be treated differently than an earthquake in california or a hurricane in the south or tornadoes in the midwest or droughts wherever they might happen. and i haven't surmised that's what they're trying to do. if they are, they hadn't shouldn't say that sandy ought to be treated differently than a different disaster because generally a disaster is a disaster, whether it's earthquake, hurricane, tornado, or sandy. so the money's going to be there and will be there on time. and you don't know exactly one month after a disaster exactly how much money is needed. in fact, they asked from the governors of those states for $80 billion. the president sent up $64 billion. some people in our area of expertise on this in our caucus have said there are certain things that aren't authorized, so that shouldn't be expended and then i point out about some vehicles that can't be purchased right now to do the good that t
in aid to farmers. this is in addition to the destruction caused by hurricane sandy, the largest hurricane ever to form in the atlantic basin. it's estimated that sandy will cost almost $80 billion in federal funding for the replacement of homes, infrastructure, and buildings. combined, the drought and sandy will cost the federal government tens of billions of dollars at a time when we're talking about our debt. it's the job of congress and the administration to help these americans in time of need, make no mistake about it. we should. we will. but we need to be honest about how we plan for disaster spending. according to a report by the g.a.o. in september, there have been over 540 disaster declarations in the last eight years requiring over $90 billion in federal aid. it's time we face facts and state the obvious -- weather is getting worse. extreme weather events are happening with increased frequency and intensity. i held a hearing last year to talk about this issue, to examine whether the federal government is really prepared for this. the answer is no. i didn't bring in the
by the areas affected by superstorm sandy. we will have live coverage of the senate here on c-span2. the pension benefit guarantee corporation director says without congressional changes the agency will end up with little resources failed improved pension plans or those plans until. he testified before the house education and the workforce subcommittee on pensions yesterday. we will show as much of this as possible into the senate else in at 11. >> -- senate gavels in at 11. >> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations] >> [inaudible conversations] >> the subcommittee on health employment labor and pensions peions will come to order. good morning, director, and it'd good to see you again. we appreciate you taking the time to be with us this morningo before we begin i'd like to take a moment to extend my ban condolences to the people of coolences to newtown, connecticut. last week an unspeakable act off people killed 20 innocentdren children and six amazing adultsl change int our country and thehk committee around sandy hook elementary school for ever. as a nation we cont
of storms struck connecticut. irene and sandy. i toured with him places, seeing in his eyes and in his voice his sense of how individuals and their families are affected by this kind of natural disaster. he is a person of heart and of soul, of big heart and a soul that reaches out to people. so i thank him for his great work, his contribution, his unstinting generosity to the people of our state, connecticut, through all of his years of service in many different positions, in many different ways, in a myriad of places throughout our state and throughout our nation, and i thank my connecticut colleague for dedicating his life to public service. i look forward to being with him if not in this chamber, in many other places around the country, and continuing to admire his great contributions to our country as well as to our state. thank you, senator lieberman. i yield the floor. i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from nebraska is recognized. mr. nelson: i ask that the quoru
a subcommittee field hearing in new jersey next monday december december 10 on super storm sandy. senator toomey. >> thank you mr. chairman and thank you mr. secretary for joining us. i would like to understand better and aspects of the actuarial review. the question arises from the interest-rate assumptions and the interest-rate interest rate environment that is used to determine the prevailing view about the value of the mutual mortgage insurance fund and the family fund. more specifically, you observe on page eight of your testimony the fact the worst shape the fund is to simplify that and you walk through the mechanisms by which a lower interest rates while good for the economy overall tend to have an adverse impact on the value of the fund. my understanding is that the actuarial review contemplates glowegee straight environment. and in the low interest-rate environment, the value of the fund is negative $31 billion. aren't we in a low incher straight environment today, and partly by virtue of what the fed has said, which is to say maintaining current policy at least through mid-2015, so thr
college. my job was to get to 270 electoral votes in key battleground states. we didn't do much with sandy given what was. i'm not an expert on it at all. just to be honest. i do think that there are a lot of things we learned and what we did on the campaign. text messaging being one example. how can we of the state of the figure multiple pathways in multiple pieces of technology be able to get information out to voters much more quickly with much more of the kind of new technology that would individualize information for folks based on where they live. and send them to websites that are easy to maneuver and easy to get around, or ways for them to do it on their mobile devices. we should be ready for that in the future and have the systems in place, and have that ready in all states moving forward. i think there's some really good things out of sandy, how it affected voting. >> any thoughts, scott? >> unfortunate we didn't spend as much time in those states addressing those similar reasons because the electoral college. i guess i would just say i know we're cautiously optimistic. talking e
>> tuesdays, thank you gates testifies in front of the house transportation committee on the hurricane sandy response and recovery. we are learning what lessons can be learned from it. see his remarks at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span3. wednesday, more from mr. craig fugate eight. abel testified in response and recovery of the storm, and this time, they will be in front of the senate appropriations committee. that hearing is live on wednesday at 10:00 a.m. eastern, also on c-span3. >> c-span, created by america's cable company since 1979 come across you as a public service by your television provider. >> next we have a press release with jay carney. he said u.s. officials are closely monitoring the situation. he also talked about the fiscal cliff negotiations and peace in the middle east. >> is everyone okay with that? [inaudible conversations] [laughter] we are talking about what extent a middle-class tax breaks for me to middle-class families. today at 2:00 p.m., people can ask the president questions on twitter with the hash tag my 2k. after that, this come in this afternoon from the presid
and areas affected by hurricane sandy. they'll take up and vote on several judicial nominations. watch the house live on c-span, and the senate live, here on c-span2. >> on tuesday, a hud official briefedded a senate panel about the steps the department is taking to streamline and strengthen section 8 public housing assistance programs that provide rental housing for over three million low income families. they discussed the implementation of some of the administrative and regulatory changes proposed during an august sub committee hearing. this is 40 minutes. >> i call the hearing to ore. i'd like to welcome the honorable senator once again to the committee for her hearing entitled "proposals to streamline and strengthen hud's rental housing assistance programs." millions of american families struggle every day to afford a roof over their heads. currently a person with a full-time job needs to earn about $18.50 an hour in order to afford ad modest t bedroom ental at the national average. this is an amount far abo
contains enforcement provisions that my brother congressman sandy levin fought for to address concerns about russia's compliance with its w.t.o. obligations and other trade concerns such as russia's persistent failure to stop intellectual property rights infringement and to help promote the rule of law in russia. these are important enforcement tools that will give us a chance to monitor russia's promise in fulfilling its commitments and i look forward to getting these actions accomplished in not in legislation. it includes the sergei magnitsky accountability act of 2012 which was inspired by the russian whistle-blower sergei magnitsky who was ruthlessly murdered. it would require that human rights violators in russia be identified and we deny them u.s. visas as well as freeze their u.s. assets. howfers -- and -- however, and here's the problem for me. the magnitsky along before us is not the magnitsky language adopted by our finance and foreign relations committees. their magnitsky language applied the same sanctions to human rights violators wherever they might be, whether in russia
. we had a little problem because of what happened with hurricane sandy, but we'll still have about 100,000 new jobs. we're approaching, it must be about four million jobs now that have been created. it doesn't nearly make up what was lost during the bush years, but we're making progress. mr. president, people in america realize we can no longer have the top-down economy that the republicans so loved during the bush years and what they wanted to create again with governor romney. so, mr. president, i'd be happy to take a look at the proposal that the president -- that my friend, the republican leader, has shown us. if we can come up with something like we did when they created this other furor by refusing to increase the debt where we had an ability to come here and have a couple of votes to determine if we were going to increase it, if that's what they want to do again, i'd be happy to seriously take a look at that and report to the white house and my caucus. but until then, i object. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: objection having been heard. mr. mcconnell: mr. p
says hurricane sandy had only a minimal effect on the numbers. >> you are watching c-span2 with politics and public affairs. weekdays feature live coverage of the u.s. senate. on weeknights watch key public policy events. every weekend, the latest nonfiction authors and books on booktv. you can see past programs and their schedules at our website. you can join in the conversation on social media sites. >> singer-songwriter james taylor will be at the national press club here in washington today. .. words are key to our imagination, our capacity to envision things. we ourselves are not completely tied to the print on the page synthesis of writing, but i think that there is no other art form so readily accessible other than perhaps film, which we work with too. but, it is something -- there is something in literature that just captures the human spirit. >> obama administration is imposing sanctions on someone islamist groups until this top leaders. the state department and treasury blacklisted the movement for unity and jihad west africa today especially designated foreign te
reasons why in the credibility of military threat is so important. one reason is, sandy, i think it was, indicated cannot be aryans to respond to credible threats of force. you looked at the hostage crisis it was resolved when the ron reagan was elected. you read the biographies of the hostage-takers, they act like a cowboy. their release the hostages the moment he was sworn in. it's not that well-known, but the soviets were taken hostage at their embassy at the same time. the soviets threatened to bomb tehran. their hostages were let go. it's also important to note that the iran-iraq board came to an end when the u.s. mistakenly shot down an iranian civil airline. the iranians thought, well, the u.s. is going to get into this war no-holds-barred and the ayatollah made a speech. during the poisoned chalice. the cards were such that he had to simply take the best deal he could. that recommending they bond in iranian airline. on to say their is a lesson there. they backed down in the face of a credible threat of force. at the same time, if you were the iranians your thinking to yourself,
hurricane sandy, not like goodie in nuclear weapons. it's very serious stuff. the worst thing is that poorly done. it was never intended to be a crate of cutting spending. with an enforcement mechanism, a disciplinary measure on the congress and white house to make sure they got something done before 2013 began. everybody thought that this doomsday scenario in front of them, they will surely not a budget deal and it probably still will. that was its purpose. its purpose is not to cut government spending. >> host: let's look at programs that get cut. national institute of health, 2.5 billion. customs and border patrol, wic program by federal courts, national parks. what do you make of those numbers? >> guest: shows are pretty big numbers. absolute numbers shuffling a lot of people. when we talk about millions and billions, jim and i both served in government and we know what happens when you do with members of that size. telling people it's about an 8% cut for 15% if you talk about what authority occurred as a better sense. so whatever program that is, it's going to be reduced. so whether it'
-up on something else. hurricane sandy. governor cuomo acting for the other governors, as well as to assemble a package of about $83 billion. have they made that proposal to the president, or is it just to the budget directers, and will there with a supplemental coming from the administration this week? >> well, yesterday, governor cuomofuls here -- cuomo was here to discuss activities remitted to -- related to hurricane senators and met with other members of the president's teamment on the issue of the supplemental, we expect to discuss the ongoing support that the federal government continues to provide for effective communities and our state and local partners. the administration obligated more than $2.1 billion to support response efforts including $1 billion approved in direct assistance to hundreds of thousands of individuals affected by the storm. we're working closely with the partners in states and in congress, but i have no more details for you at this time. all right. >> you and the president described the use of chemical weapons of syria as a line not to be crossed without incurri
in infrastructure, which we desperately need after hurricane -- or we call it super storm sandy that hit new york, that hit new jersey, that hit connecticut, that hit delaware, that hit maryland. we now see that our infrastructure has to be what we call hardened, made stronger. we can do that if we invest in our people. so, madam president, the president has offered a very clear plan that takes us off the fiscal cliff that is fair. we have 27 days to do the right thing. the senate already passed the tax cuts for 98% of the people. all we're asking is for the house to do that, match us. then we can get back to the table and figure out a way to soften the blow of the automatic spending cuts. we could look at tax reform. and i want to just say this about tack reform. when our colleagues complain about tax rates and say well, we would rather close loopholes, watch out. in order to raise the kind of funds we need to raise to lower this deficit, you're looking at the two biggest --quote, unquote -- deductions. one is for your mortgage and one is for charitable, and i would ask rhetorically what billion
a very important and passionate argument about the effects of hurricane sandy. in pennsylvania we had significant damage, but exclusively almost entirely from wind damage. millions lost power, but the damage was incomparable to the damage compounded by the water damage done along the shore. i'm looking forward to see the supplemental well-crafted and i hope properly outside because we also have a fiscal crisis of enormous magnitude. necessary spending to address emergencies is very real. it's really important at the outset. thank you, mr. chairman. >> i would like to thank secretary donovan for his testimony and for being here with us today. the financial stability of the fha is an issue the committee does not take lightly and we will continue this dialogue to take action where necessary to protect taxpayers. we appreciate your testimony, mr. secretary. this hearing is adjourned. >> thank you, mr. chairman. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> the supreme court will look at what was passed
in sandy funds would be spent. don't you think you could put together a list of spending cuts that at least, at least includes robosquirrel? we're still waiting. why? because for democrats, apparently, every dollar in federal spending is sacred. once secured, it can't be cut. that's why we have got trillion-dollar deficits. the truth is until the president gets specific about cuts, nobody should trust democrats to put a dime in new revenue toward real deficit reduction or to stop their shakedown of the taxpayers at the top 2%. as one liberal lawmaker put it last week, that's just the beginning. when it comes to deficit deals, the taxpayers need to trust but verify. on cuts, that means specifics. and, mr. president, on an entirely different subject, as we enter the final weeks of the 112th congress, one of the toughest tasks for me is saying goodbye to colleagues who won't be with us at the start of the next congress. so i'd like to kick it off this morning by spending just a few minutes bragging on my long-time friend and neighbor to the north, senator dick lugar. let me just start by sayin
? it is not like 9/11. it is not even like hurricane sandy. it is not like iran getting nuclear weapons but it's very serious stuff and the worst thing about it is that it's so indiscriminate. it is so poorly done. it was never intended to be a way to cut spending. it was intended to be an enforcement mechanism, a disciplinary measure on the congress and the white house to make sure they got something done before 2013 began. and everybody thought, well, with this doomsday scenario in front of them they will surely enact a budget deal, and i think they probably still will but that was its purpose. its purpose was not just to cut government spending. >> host: let's take a look at some of the examples of programs that would get cut. national institute of health, 2.5 billion. the fbi, 742. customs and border patrol. the wic program. 543 million. federal courts, et cetera. the list goes on. national parks. what do you make of those numbers and size of those cuts? >> guest: those are pretty big numbers. i think, absolute numbers don't mean a lot to people. i mean, you know, when we talk about millio
their humvees and heavy trucks to transport delawareans with medical emergencies. when superstorm sandy struck just last month, 120 soldiers from delaware traveled with heavy equipment to assist in recovery efforts in new york and new jersey. when hurricane katrina devastated new orleans in 2005, two of our c-130 aircraft left from new castle airport the next day, carrying the first of what would be 400 troops from delaware who assisted with gulf coast recovery. the national guard is resourceful, ready to serve and they go everywhere they're called. these are truly citizen soldiers. when i was the county executive of new castle county, delaware, we had as many as seven different county employees at different times deployed overseas, many of them police officers, called up for their national guard service, folks who are the epitome of serving at home and serving abroad. so it's with a very personal sense of the needs and the challenges when i thank those employers who recognize that even when they are not at their desks, even when they are not contributing to their employer, our national guard
. the senate today is also expected to work on a $60 billion hurricane sandy relief package. there's to agreement on the so- there's no agreement on the so-called fiscal cliff, but negotiations continue off the floor. the presiding officer: the senate will come to order. the chaplain, dr. barry black, will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. o god, before whom the lives of all are exposed and the desires of all known, be at work in our lives. wipe away selfish interest, so that we may perfectly love and truly serve you. give our lawmakers courage as they face today's challenges providing them with the necessary skill to perform their duties and accomplish your purposes. give them the wisdom to refuse to sow to the wind, thereby risking reaping the whirlwind. may they find joy in both serving and loving you. we pray in your holy name. amen. the presiding officer: please join me in reciting the pledge of allegiance to the flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible,
and the unemployment rate fell to 7.7%. that's the lowest since december of 2008. the government says hurricane sandy had only a minimal effect on the numbers. although the weather prevented 369,000 people from getting to work, they were still counted as employed. >>> singer-songwriter james taylor will be at the national press club here in washington today. he will talk about election shun reform. c-span will have it live beginning at 1:00 eastern. at 7:00 eastern c-span will be live with a discussion on skilled immigrants. virginia senator mark warner is talking about a bill that will allow more highly killed immigrants into the united states. it will be hosted by the university of virginia. >>> we've had explosions of knowledge in medicine but we've not coordinated care. all these services we have end up having so many cracks that the cracks are as harmful as the diseases that we're treating and you got to step back and ask, you know, are we hurting people over all, i mean on a global level? what are we doing sometimes? and of course now we've got the institute of medicine report saying 30% of eve
reporting at least 27 people were killed at the sandy hook school in newtown connecticut. 18 of the victims believed to be children. 20 minutes ago president obama address to the nation and said our hearts are broken today. speaking in the white house briefing room the president pledged, she said, quote, we have to come together and take meaningful action. you can see the entire state of the president on the web site, c-span.org. the flag on the u.s. capitol you see the shot flying half staff ordered by speaker john boehner as you know the speaker and the president have been speaking on the so-called fiscal cliff and as part of the washington journal seriously look at unemployment insurance, what is funded and how that might be affected by the so-called fiscal clef. -- cliff. this is about five minutes. >> we turn to unemployment insurance and how the benefits could be impacted. joining for the discussion as the times' national correspondent. thanks for coming in. we want to start the discussion. when we are talking about unemployment insurance, what specific programs are we talking about h
in the house, sandy levin, that called for this legislation. the speaker was going to bring it up to kill it but he couldn't kill it. and then we moved to albany b, b, -- plan b, the debacle of all debacles. it's the mother of all debacles. that was brought up in an effort to send us something. he couldn't even pass it among republicans, it was so absurd, he meaning the speaker. so it's very clear now, mr. president, that the speaker's number-one goal is to get elected speaker on january 3. the house is not even here. he's told me he will give them two days to get back here, 48 hours. not two days. 48 hours. they don't even have enough of the leadership here to meet to talk about it. they have done it with conference calls. people are spread all over this country because the speaker basically is waiting for january 3. now, the president campaigned on raising taxes on people making more than $250,000 a year. the bush-era tax cuts will expire at the end of this year. obama was elected with a surplus of about three million votes. he won the election. he campaigned on this issue. again, the s
billion spending bill for hurricane sandy victims. we're expecting up to 21 amendments on that bill. now live coverage of the u.s. senate here on c-span2. the presiding officer: the senate will come to order. the chaplain, dr. barry black, will lead the senate in prayer. the chaplain: let us pray. almighty god, before whom the generations rise and pass away, watch over america and use our senators to keep it strong and good. imprint upon their hearts such reverence for you that they will be ashamed and afraid to offend you. remind them that their thoughts, words, and deeds are under divine scrutiny. bless also the many others who work faithfully on capitol hill and whose labors bring dignity and efficiency to the legislative process. we pray in your sacred name. amen. the presiding officer: please join me in reciting the pledge of allegiance to the flag. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. the presiding officer: the clerk will read a communication to
't believe there's anyone in this chamber that doesn't understand the devastating impact of sandy on the northeast and the pain and the suffering that has come from that. i don't think there's anyone in this chamber that doesn't understand that this is an emergency supplemental appropriation that is needed now to address this pain and suffering and help rebuild and help provide the relief necessary to these people and businesses and others in the north east. and we want do that. but the bill before us presented by the democrats -- the presiding officer: could we have order, please. mr. schumer: could we have order, please. i can't hear the senator from indiana. mr. coats: the bill presented by the other side throws out $60-plus billion to address not just immediate needs but also future needs for future storms and even unrelated issues not related to sandy. the coats alternative, which i hope to gain support for, documents what is needed, takes that documentation provided by fema, s.b.a., all the agencies involved and more than generously compensates for what is needed between now
of the victims of sandy. look, my state was hit by that storm, not nearly as bad as new york, new jersey and connecticut and some others, but there are real victims of this storm. there are genuine needs and we need to fund those needs. and i'm in favor of making sure we do fund the needs that we have. but we've got a category of spending that is going out for construction for years to come to mitigate against dangers of future storms in future years and future decades. that might be very wise. that might be a very appropriate spending. but it's not an emergency. this is not sandbags around someone's house who is in danger of a storm. and that kind of infrastructure spending is the kind of spending we do routinely but we plan for it and we budget it. and if it is indeed the priority that many people, probably including myself, believe it is, then it ought to be weighed in competition of the other pressing needs and we ought to plan for it and budget for it, and that's all i'm asking. so is this budget point of order does not cut one dime of spending from this bill. it simply says that th
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